Early Years BA (Hons) top-up

BA (Hons)
Study Area: Higher Education
Duration: 1 Year
Attendance: Full Time

Course Overview

Be part of the graduate children’s workforce of the future and shape the changes that will make a difference in children’s early lives UCAS Code: P9K7

This programme is perfect for those working with children and young people that have previously completed the Foundation Degree in Early Years – also offered at the University Centre – or another Level 5 qualification in Early Years/Childhood Studies. 

It provides a progression route for students wishing to be part of the graduate children’s workforce of the future and it will be a significant step toward achieving Early Years Teacher Status or Qualified Teacher Status should you wish. 

From September 2021 you will also be able to opt to undertake the Graduate Practitioner Competencies (GPC). Successful completion of these competencies alongside your degree will mean you will be awarded Graduate Practitioner Status (GPS). Gaining recognition for Graduate Practitioner Competencies (level 6) is supported by the Early Childhood Studies Degree Network (ECSDN) and is recognised in the Department for Education’s career progression map. 

The programme team has worked in partnership with employers to develop a newly refocused programme which is relevant and progressive allowing practitioners to further enhance their skills, knowledge and abilities. 

Modules to be studied are: 

  • Collaborative Approaches to Research 
  • Child in Society 
  • Child Health and Wellbeing 
  • Becoming a Change Agent 
  • Dissertation 

This programme should challenge and encourage you to ask questions of yourself and your role and deepen your understanding of early years. 

Important Links:

  • Click HERE for the programme specification.
  • For a full list of the University Centre’s regulations and policies please click HERE
  • Click HERE for The Open University Regulations for Validated Awards

Start Date

September 2024

Entry Requirements & Interview Process

This is a Level 6 programme and you will normally be expected to have an undergraduate qualification worth 240 credit points related area, of which 120 should be at Level 5. This will usually be the Foundation Degree Early Years – also delivered at the University Centre. It may also be another foundation degree or HND in a relevant subject area.

Applicants should also have a GCSE English at Grade C or Grade 4 or above. Those wishing to continue onto Primary Teaching qualifications following the course will need to have Maths and Science at GCSE Grade C or Grade 4 also.

Suitably qualified overseas applicants may be required to evidence a good level of English by achieving a minimum of International English Language Testing System (IELTS 6.0) or Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL: 550 or equivalent).

There are no appointed placements undertaken in this course however there is the expectation that potential students either be in full- or part-time employment, undertaking at least 16 hours voluntary or paid employment per week in an early years setting.

Applicants who demonstrate that they have met the academic requirements, thought about the appropriateness of the programme, have a clear idea of their progression route and have the relevant personal skills and qualities will be invited to interview.

The University Centre actively supports claims for Recognition of Prior Learning. You must show how the learning you have already completed matches the learning that is required on the programme you are applying for. 


On completion of the course, candidates are able to apply for one of the many pathways available into teacher training, including the possibility to undertake a PGCE and gain a full teaching qualification which will enable you to teach the full scope of primary both key stage one and two.

Candidates can also apply for EYITT accreditation which allows opportunity to apply for a position within Early Years and in some instances employment in primary school working with children up to the end of key stage one.

Assessment Methods

Before you hand-in or present a final piece of work there is usually an opportunity for a discussion with your tutor in a one-to-one tutorial. You will be encouraged to submit or present your work-in-progress to your tutor – which will not be graded – to see whether you are on the right lines. There is usually a limit to the amount of feedback that your tutor can give you – please ask them about this. 

Your assessed work will go through a rigorous process of internal moderation and then will be checked by an externally appointed person called an external examiner. At each stage this means that marking and grading is checked and may be adjusted. 

Course Fees

£7950 per year

All higher education students must apply to Student Finance England for assistance towards fees. For help or advice with this please contact our Guidance Team on 01422 399367. 

The University Centre has a HE Hardship Fund which students may access if they are facing financial difficulties. 

Additional information on fees and funding

Awarding Body

This award is validated by The Open University 

Early Years BA (Hons) top-up

Study Area: Higher Education
Duration: 1 Year
Attendance: Full Time
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